I can think of a few different ways that it could be set up
- Skyrim structure - There are just a bunch of saves grouped together allowing for multiple instances, that may or may not be different games, but the most recent is what is loaded and in order to play a different save you will have to load the game up then in game go to a different save.
- Skyrim save mechanic- Mostly up to the player to make saves, if the player fails to have a recent save then the next death is a cruel punishment sending them back hours.
- Minecraft structure - You have multiple 'worlds' / 'universes' when you start up the game and you choose which to play, but you may only play the latest save and are unable to load older saves of that 'world' / 'universe'.
- Minecraft save mechanic - the game saves upon quitting, if you crash then everything you did during that session has a good chance of being gone. This is one of the most common save types IMO, the classic Save and Quit
- Kerbal Space Program structure- The game has multiple game saves like Minecraft but every time you load the game, there is a temporary quick save file that you can create with f10 and reload/revert to with f9. Additionally you may revert to the shuttle launch or vehicle assembly just prior to launch, but this feature is only available as long as you do not leave focus from that specific shuttle/craft.
- Kerbal Space Program save mechanic - the game does it all the heavy lifting for you, upon reaching certain points or certain events occurring the game will save and that point will be loaded if a quick save is not yet set or if the game crashes. Quick saves are player made and have the ability to go back past the main game save.
All of these save mechanics have pros and cons but what I would claim to be an ideal system is more of a mix between KSP and Skyrim and less of a presence of Minecraft. Having Skyrim’s ability to make in-game saves is helpful, especially when the game is modded, allowing for some crash protection but having the KSP style quick save is a very handy tool. Allowing the use of two function keys for quick saving and loading the quick save allows for a ‘seamless’ play through by giving the player the option of not going into a menu to save then come back into the game. With Skyrim in mind, one would argue the need for a better auto save mechanic, one that is closer to KSP. Some good auto save points that come to mind would be getting on and off warp rails, interacting with a station or a colony, going through a wormhole or coming out a wormhole.
I was unsure whether this should be in general due to my overall questions or suggestions due to the suggestions I ended up making, but since my original intent was to pose a question I figured that general was appropriate. If a mod thinks otherwise I would like to apologize for the mistake.
*EDIT* added a poll,
Flatfingers wrote: Also, this needs a poll.